‘Revenge Shopping' Expected to Ramp Up in Coming Weeks

Consumers are ready to return to stores for retail therapy

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What to Know

  • Retail experts expect shoppers to head back to stores as more vaccines are rolled out and states loosen restrictions.
  • Consumers say they are ready to shop in person and be able to try clothes on before buying them.
  • Some spenders have turned into savers during the pandemic. Will the new habits hold?

Making up for lost time. Are you ready to hit the stores? “Revenge shopping” is a theory that as restrictions loosen, people will head to the stores and spend a lot of money as revenge for being cooped up for so long.

“There’s a pent-up demand to get out, get going and to get engaged with each other,” said Gautham Vadakkepatt, the director of the Center for Retail Transformation at the School of Business, George Mason University. “And you’ll see this improving across time. We’ll see more people going out, we’ll see these sales numbers actually going up.”

Sales of clothing and cosmetics are expected to get a big bump as we ditch our sweats for suits, start wearing makeup again and head back to work -- or just head out!

The National Retail Federation expects retail sales to grow between 6.5 percent and 8.2 percent over 2020 to between $4.33 trillion and $4.4 trillion.

But some of you may not be so quick to run out the door and shop, as the pandemic has turned many spenders into savers.

“So there’s a situation that time is going to tell what is really going to happen, is that social need for connection going to ring out or have we created new habits that are going to stay with us for a longer period of time?” said Vadakkepatt.

If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s the importance of having savings. So if you have been able to tuck some money away it’s important not to get too excited and spend it all.

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